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jonoslack

SL2-S VS SL2 ISO Comparison with SL2 downsized to SL2-S

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Hi There

Several people have asked me about this, and so it seemed to be worth doing it! 

All the files were originally shot on DNG - the sharpening and noise reduction sliders in Lightroom were all zeroed. The SL2 files were opened in Photoshop and the Image size reduced without any noise reduction help. They were then exported as 100% jpg quality 12 jpg files. I've then done an XY comparison zoomed in to approximately 100% and taken a screen shot. I'll put this on to the Review thread as well, but I thought it was worth putting it up as a separate thread.

As you would expect - downsizing the SL2 images does help with the noise - but even so, at higher ISO there is still at least a stop difference. In each case the SL2-S is on the left. To me this is a little like angels dancing on the heads of pins, and it's also open to methodology questions - and anyway, why would you not use noise reduction?) 

First of all, the Scene:

 

100 ISO: 

400 ISO

1600 ISO

6,400 ISO

12,500 ISO

25,000 ISO

50,000 ISO

Finally 100,000 on the SL2-S and 50,000 on the SL2

 

 

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46 minutes ago, Wonzo said:

Hi Jono! Many thanks for this comparison. There are considerable color differences. Which would you say are more lifelike?

Ah, Busted

I fear I used auto white balance (silly me). But this is what I think - before 12,500 ISO the colour differences are slight, after that the SL2-S does better, Probably you should entirely ignore colour differences (except with respect to colour noise) in these samples. . . . . To be fair, the light was completely disgusting anyway - but that was intentional. I would reshoot it using a custom white balance, but sadly I no longer have the SL2-S. 

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7 hours ago, jonoslack said:

Ah, Busted

I fear I used auto white balance (silly me). But this is what I think - before 12,500 ISO the colour differences are slight, after that the SL2-S does better, Probably you should entirely ignore colour differences (except with respect to colour noise) in these samples. . . . . To be fair, the light was completely disgusting anyway - but that was intentional. I would reshoot it using a custom white balance, but sadly I no longer have the SL2-S. 

C1 would tell you what color temperature and shift your all-knowing AWB came up with for each series.  Does LR also bring that information up?  My guess, when I looked at your series, was that the exposure for the SL2 shots was about 1/3 stop brighter.  Comparing the yellow and orange books on the diagonal, right side, gives that impression.

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Thanks. I’ve been wanting to see a side by side comparison like this. Question: I understand that you did not use LIghtroom’s noise reduction. Did you have the camera’s noise reduction switched off? As I mentioned in another thread, I’m considering this camera for astrophotography. In my experience with the Sony A7Iii, using noise reduction, even lightly, will smear or totally erase some stars. So, ill switch it off in camera if I can.

thanks again.

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Thanks Jono! I appreciate it! Both cameras look great to my eye. This is a case where I think people should choose more on what level of file size they prefer, unless they truly plan on shooting for a significant amount of time at ISO 12500. Or on the price, video specs and so on. The high ISO performance is indeed better, but it does not seem to be night and day until the extreme settings. 

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Thanks for the comparison. It helps to stick with the SL2.
I use normally at the max ISO800, and there the two are identical (or even better the SL2 has more resolution).
In the worst case scenarios I use up to 3200 or maybe even 6400. And there still the differences are really small and can be neglected.

A perfectionist would now probably say we need to see the differences in finer steps in the critical areas (from 3200 to 6400, so at 4000 and 5000, or maybe also in the region between 1600 and 3200). But you said already that you have the camera no more. 
And it would mainly be playing the "Tuepflischiesser" (deutsch Korinthenkacker, Kleinkraemer, Erbsenzaehler, Pedant, english bookworm, scholastic). So it is not really necessary to see the differences (or the lack thereof). And we change ISO usually in full steps anyway.

Thanks for taking the effort.

Edited by caissa

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7 hours ago, Cattoo said:

Thanks. I’ve been wanting to see a side by side comparison like this. Question: I understand that you did not use LIghtroom’s noise reduction. Did you have the camera’s noise reduction switched off? As I mentioned in another thread, I’m considering this camera for astrophotography. In my experience with the Sony A7Iii, using noise reduction, even lightly, will smear or totally erase some stars. So, ill switch it off in camera if I can.

thanks again.

In the SL2 you can turn off LENR, probably also in the SL2-S. Other noise reductions are mainly in the software that you use for treating your raws. So you need to set it there (in LR, C1 or whatever).     LENR = Long Exposure Noise Reduction

Edited by caissa

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10 hours ago, caissa said:

In the SL2 you can turn off LENR, probably also in the SL2-S. Other noise reductions are mainly in the software that you use for treating your raws. So you need to set it there (in LR, C1 or whatever).     LENR = Long Exposure Noise Reduction

I understand that as I have the SL2. For my purposes, I’m wondering how the SL2-S performs at high ISOs without noise reduction. 

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Thanks for sharing Jono.

I noticed that the SL2 consistently has a faster shutter speed as compared to the SL2-S. Was this due to metering, different lighting conditions, or actually higher sensitivity for the same ISO setting on the SL2 vs SL2-S? Was there any lightroom exposure adjustments made to the photos for each ISO comparison?

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4 hours ago, beewee said:

Thanks for sharing Jono.

I noticed that the SL2 consistently has a faster shutter speed as compared to the SL2-S. Was this due to metering, different lighting conditions, or actually higher sensitivity for the same ISO setting on the SL2 vs SL2-S? Was there any lightroom exposure adjustments made to the photos for each ISO comparison?

Good point. SL2 shoots have less exposure (faster shutter speed), therefore SL2 images have more noise because of that.

What that means is that SL2-S does not have less noise than SL2.

Edited by SrMi

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vor 6 Stunden schrieb SrMi:

Good point. SL2 shoots have less exposure (faster shutter speed), therefore SL2 images have more noise because of that.

What that means is that SL2-S does not have less noise than SL2.

Due to different ISO sensitivity, at the same shutter speed the SL2 pictures are brighter. To match exposure one, therefore, needs to use a slightly faster shutter speed on the SL2. I suspect, that’s what Jono did.

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45 minutes ago, Chaemono said:

Due to different ISO sensitivity, at the same shutter speed the SL2 pictures are brighter. To match exposure one, therefore, needs to use a slightly faster shutter speed on the SL2. I suspect, that’s what Jono did.

A matched exposure is when you have the same shutter speed and aperture, not when you have the same ISO.
It is more relevant to compare the images at the same exposure than at the same ISO. What is the difference between SL2 and SL2-S when we have the same aperture and shutter speed? After all, the aperture (DOF) and shutter-speed (camera or object movement) are the constraints that increase the noise when lights is low. 
In Jono's samples, the comparison should be with one ISO stop difference,  e.g., SL2-S image at ISO 3200 with SL2 image at ISO 1600.

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vor 15 Minuten schrieb SrMi:

A matched exposure is when you have the same shutter speed and aperture, not when you have the same ISO.
It is more relevant to compare the images at the same exposure than at the same ISO. What is the difference between SL2 and SL2-S when we have the same aperture and shutter speed? After all, the aperture (DOF) and shutter-speed (camera or object movement) are the constraints that increase the noise when lights is low. 
In Jono's samples, the comparison should be with one ISO stop difference,  e.g., SL2-S image at ISO 3200 with SL2 image at ISO 1600.

I had a sense that this is where you were going to go. :)

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vor 10 Stunden schrieb SrMi:

...
In Jono's samples, the comparison should be with one ISO stop difference,  e.g., SL2-S image at ISO 3200 with SL2 image at ISO 1600.

Actually, the exposure difference is only about 0.1 stops in my experience. What is interesting is that the SL2-S pretty much always has to be shot at EV 1/3 less than the SL2 to achieve the same shutter speed. 

SL2 as shot opened in LR not touched

SL2-S as shot opened in LR not touched

 

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30 minutes ago, Chaemono said:

Actually, the exposure difference is only about 0.1 stops in my experience. What is interesting is that the SL2-S pretty much always has to be shot at EV 1/3 less than the SL2 to achieve the same shutter speed. 

<snip>

 

In Jono's set of images the shutter speed and aperture are specified: at same ISO, SL2 and SL2-S are about one stop apart (shutter speed).

I understand that you observe only 1/3 of a stop difference in your example. It could be that the metering algorithm is different and the difference depends on the scene. This may also explain why you observe better highlight recovery with SL2-S than with SL2 (highlight recovery is not related to the DR).

 

 

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On 12/13/2020 at 6:47 AM, Cattoo said:

Thanks. I’ve been wanting to see a side by side comparison like this. Question: I understand that you did not use LIghtroom’s noise reduction. Did you have the camera’s noise reduction switched off? As I mentioned in another thread, I’m considering this camera for astrophotography. In my experience with the Sony A7Iii, using noise reduction, even lightly, will smear or totally erase some stars. So, ill switch it off in camera if I can.

thanks again.

Hi There

They were all shot as DNG, so the noise reduction is not on in camera anyway.

All the best

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On 12/13/2020 at 5:34 AM, scott kirkpatrick said:

C1 would tell you what color temperature and shift your all-knowing AWB came up with for each series.  Does LR also bring that information up?  My guess, when I looked at your series, was that the exposure for the SL2 shots was about 1/3 stop brighter.  Comparing the yellow and orange books on the diagonal, right side, gives that impression.

HI Scott

Yes - LR tells you - but the sensors are different, so matching it doesn't make them look the same! I agree about the exposure. I made the best out of what I have (don't have an SL2-S to do it again!)

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On 12/13/2020 at 11:56 AM, Stuart Richardson said:

Thanks Jono! I appreciate it! Both cameras look great to my eye. This is a case where I think people should choose more on what level of file size they prefer, unless they truly plan on shooting for a significant amount of time at ISO 12500. Or on the price, video specs and so on. The high ISO performance is indeed better, but it does not seem to be night and day until the extreme settings. 

Hi Stuart

I completely agree - it's the resolution and Video which is most relevant - get what suits!

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